This movie…was a disappointment.
Alice Through the Looking Glass takes place three years after Alice in Wonderland ends and we find Alice captain of her late father’s ship, the Wonder. And a quite capable captain at that. She returns to England to find that her family’s world is unraveling and in a sticky situation. Lose the ship or lose her and her mother’s house. This crisis is put on hold as she steps through a mirror and enters Underland once more.
Things are not all right in Underland either. The Mad Hatter is going mad—but not in a normal way. He believes his family, whom he had understood to have died years ago, are still alive. Sadly, this is impossible. The White Queen tells Alice the only way to save the Hatter is to go back in time and save his family so his delusions become real. And to do this she needs to steal from Time himself.
Alice in the real world is established as a smart, capable woman. She sees things that are impossible and finds a way to make them possible. Alice in Underland? It’s as if she’s a child again and not thinking about consequences. I am willing to suspend a fair bit of disbelief, especially when enjoying an adventure in Wonderland, but I just couldn’t with this one.
Stealing from time? Oh, the paradoxes! I could not buy that without questioning, without thinking of, you know, unraveling the core of time itself and destroying the world. Yet Alice would jump through time without stopping to consider the consequences. It’s just been established early on that she’s no fool, but her actions in Underland tore me out of the story because they did not fit her character in the least.
All that said, the movie is not without its merits. It is a beauty to see. I do not regret the price of admission just to see the creative world that is Underland again. At the same time, I would watch a whole movie seeing Alice’s adventures in the real world. She is a confident, strong female lead (in the real world), which is something that isn’t always done right by Hollywood. I loved seeing her mother’s character growth from the beginning of the movie to the end. And Alice Through the Looking Glass has an excellent ending.
I would be doing the movie a disservice if I did not end this review on this: through the story, we are reminded of how valuable time is. Cherish the time you have and don’t waste it—it is a gift.
Heidi Joelle is professional minion by day and a writer, editor, and reader by night. She can be coaxed from the house by the sound of a good adventure, or traveling somewhere new. Her Saint Bernard, Smokey, and problem-solving cat, Diamond, bring extra joy to daily life.